Dee Gordon dropped a bunt down the third base line on Stephen Strasburg’s second pitch of the afternoon, reaching on a leadoff single. Ichiro Suzuki then ripped Strasburg’s next offering into right field for a double, giving the Marlins runners at second and third.
After getting Martin Prado to pop out to Ryan Zimmerman, it appeared Strasburg had a chance to battle his way out of the jam when he pumped two heaters past Justin Bour. But the right-hander left a 95 mph fastball over the plate and Bour hammered it deep to right-center field for a three-run homer.
The three runs are the most Strasburg has allowed in his five starts since returning from the disabled list on Aug. 8.
Marlins left-hander Brad Hand retired the Nats in order in the first, whiffing Anthony Rendon and Bryce Harper to end the frame.
Update: Making his first start since injuring his right knee in Thursday’s win over the Brewers, Michael A. Taylor lined a single to right in the third. Two batters later, Jayson Werth drilled a two-run homer into the Marlins bullpen in left. It was Werth’s fifth home run of the season.
Update II: Derek Dietrich led off the fourth with his 10th home run of the season. It’s the second time this season that Strasburg has surrendered more than one homer in a start.
Update III: Strasburg was yanked after throwing only 60 pitches through four innings. He allowed four runs on seven hits with no walks and three strikeouts. Strasburg didn’t appear to have the same pop on his fastball that he has displayed in his previous four starts.
Doug Fister pitched a scoreless fifth inning in relief for the Nats.
Update IV: Taylor started the fifth with a bloop single to center and then advanced to second on Fister’s sacrifice bunt. Werth followed with a double scorched down the left field line, scoring Taylor.
After Rendon grounded out, Harper lined a single into left plating Werth to tie the game. Zimmerman then slapped a base hit to right, giving the Nats runners at the corners for Ian Desmond.
Desmond delivered an RBI single to center, pushing the Nats ahead.
After giving up a leadoff double to Dietrich, Fister retired the next three Marlins in order with Taylor ending the frame with an outstanding running catch on a drive to deep right-center from Jeff Mathis.
Update V: Danny Espinosa started the sixth by smoking a double just inside the bag at first. Two batters later, Clint Robinson launched a two-run homer into the second deck in right. It was the first pinch-hit home run of Robinson’s career and his seventh homer on the season. He also belted a big two-run shot in the sixth last night.
Felipe Rivero started the seventh for the Nats.
The Nationals lead the Marlins 7-4 in the seventh.
Update VI: Drew Storen worked the eighth and Jonathan Papelbon worked out of a two-on, two-out jam in the ninth for the save as the Nats won 7-4. That’s four series wins in a row for Washington.
Fister, Rivero, Storen and Papelbon combined to pitch five scoreless innings in relief. With the Mets dropping the Red Sox 5-4, the Nats remain 5 1/2 games back in the National League East,